We have recently seen a surge in the number of firms adapting EMV (EuroMasterCardVisa) chip technology in their credit cards. The EMV chip promises to keep the account holder’s information “encrypted,” making it difficult for a hacker to extract the sensitive personal and account information necessary to complete an unauthorized purchase. Because the EMV chip is widely used outside the United States, these firms are also adapting the technology in an effort to increase the acceptance of their cards at foreign merchants.
Currently, three Bank Monitor firms – Bank of America, CitiCards and U.S. Bank – have introduced credit cards with EMV chips. Let’s take a look at how these firms are promoting their new offerings:
Bank of America
Through a press release, Bank of America did a nice job communicating the benefits of EMV technology. They also announced which cards would receive the chip automatically and what cards offer the chip as a free optional upgrade. Individual card product pages were also updated on the public site credit card section to reflect the changes.
CitiCards added new option to the private site allowing almost all of its clients to quickly request a free plastic card upgrade containing an EMV chip. Additionally, the firm introduced a new Hilton HHonors card that also features the chip.
U.S. Bank added an EMV chip to the FlexPerks Travel Rewards card. Additionally, the firm updated the card’s product page and added a link to an informational page which describes the technology and even provides a picture of a typical EMV terminal.
At the moment, firms seem to be focusing their EMV promotions around the theme of “acceptance”, targeting clients that travel and shop internationally. As more merchants in the States adopt this technology, credit card issuers are likely to adjust their promotional approach to reach a larger audience of cardholders. Firms may choose to focus on EMV’s enhanced security and find ways to make it easier for clients to receive a compatible card.